#310 My dear brother in the NCR…

[This post was titled – My Dear North Indian Brother; however, I think I need to take a step back and realize that it has little to do with North India, and more to do with Delhi and surrounding regions]

… All Indians are my brothers and sisters… I shall give respect to my parents, teachers and elders and treat everyone with courtesy…

You have most likely heard the above words at a very early age during your Primary Education. The above lines belong to the Indian National Pledge written by Swami Vivekananda, and is commonly recited by Indians in public events, especially in schools and colleges.

I am not sure if every Indian thinks that way, or if he is even proud to call himself Indian. What happens when a car behind yours slightly touches the bumper of your car? What happens when an auto-rickshaw wala denies to ferry you to your destination? What happens when the girl you like rejects you? Is your integrity questioned at that time? Do you forget the respect you ought to give others? Don’t the car driver, the auto wala, and the girl have the right to make their own decisions? Don’t they even have the right to live, let alone live peacefully?

Does your blood boil and your head get devil’s horns? What is it that gives you this aggression –  is it the fact that one of your relatives is some bigshot in the government or in the police? Or is it the fact that you are a hefty man who drinks alcohol and eats meat? Is it justified that you run your car over someone who slightly scratched your car? Is it justified that you rape a 75 year old lady just because she argued with you over which route to take her by? Is it justified that you pull out your knife and stab the girl at the bus stand just because she does not want to marry you? Is it justified that you kill your daughter just because she had sex with your servant?

Are all small incidents balanced when you return the favor by taking someone’s life?

Can you take a step back and keep a tab on your aggression? On the road, in your home, in the school, at work, in the metro… everywhere? Young kids are picking up this aggression from what they see at home and pouring it out on their friends and enemies in school. Is this what you want to teach your kids? Are you failing to pass on basic values to your kids? Provide them with an encyclopedia instead of a Pulsar and a Swiss Knife!

Can you take another step back and bring the peace and harmony Indians have been known for? Aren’t both of us equals? Aren’t rules uniform for both of us? Then why this aggression, why!? I, from the lower half of India, am scared to come to your part of the country. Not because it does not belong to me, but because I am scared that I might fall prey to your aggression. I feel unsafe in the territories you breed. Invite me and make me feel comfortable. Not by showing me news of rapes and murders every few hours. Look at the following news headlines coming from Delhi –

Schoolboy murdered
Man stabs parents
Killed over mobile phone
DU girl shot dead
Pilot runs over man
Life lost for a screwdriver
Murder over chicken tikka

I almost laughed in disbelief, but aren’t you ashamed?

As a small request, I would be glad to see cars in cities without the symbol that says “ARMY”. What does that symbol mean? Does it mean that you are an Army officer? Or does it mean that one of your family members is an Army officer? Even if that is so, what do you want to show to the car driving behind you? Do you want to claim your supremacy on the road? Or do you want to stop anyone from honking at you and overtaking you on the street? Or have you put it so that the towing van does not tow your vehicle from a no-parking zone? What is it that you want to show? It simply points to the fact that you want to exhibit your supremacy and take advantage in any untoward situation! Go ahead, remove the sticker from your car and scooter today, and feel proud that you are only as privileged as everyone else in this country!

I love your cities, I love your food, I love your traditions, I even find your girls very pretty (prettier than girls down south – let them survive birth!) but not your aggression! That does not make me holier than you, but these are things we can together think over!

– Your concerned distant relative

These are purely my own thoughts and not inspired by any one particular person or incident. It is not directed to the whole North Indian / NCR community but certain bad patches that have scared me and many Indians like me. I am not saying that Indians in other parts of the country do not have aggression, they do, but there is clearly more aggression in the NCR that is leading to more rapes and murders each day. Aggression leading to murders and rapes is not just another thing, it is something very serious and something gone terribly wrong in a civilization. This claim is substantiated by studies. According to statistics released by Delhi police, 15 per cent of the killings last year resulted from spur-of-the-moment provocations.

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23 thoughts on “#310 My dear brother in the NCR…

  1. Aditya,

    Your article seems to be targeting the North Indian community. That is not your intention, I know. But, reading the article gives one the feeling. Starting from the title, “My dear North Indian brother…”, why “North Indian brother”? Why not “My Brothers” just like in the pledge you mentioned.

    Do you think such incidents do not happen in any other part of India. All the incidents you have mentioned are by and large from NCR, which are highlighted too much by the media, I am not saying these are untrue. I agree, it happens in NCR more often & frequently, so what? It happens else where too. It may not get reported or highlighted so much.

    By writing “North Indian brother”, you have generalized all the North Indians, which is not right. I am sure, none of the North Indian who have read this, agree with the violence, but every North Indian will take this personally, you must have even received some nasty comments.

    So, use your writings to create harmony, not hatred!!

    1. Siddharth,
      I am not using my writing to create hatred, but to make people aware that this spur-of-the-moment aggression that leads to murders and rapes is doing no good to the society.

      I have changed the header since I realized it did not reflect what I meant to say, as you rightly pointed out. However, I still stick to the fact that such incidents happens more in the NCR. And if they are being highlighted in the media more than those in other regions, I think it is right. NCR is the country’s capital region and there will be more focus on it, from within the country as well as from other nations.

      Also, my claim that there are more murders and rapes in NCR than any other city is backed by studies. One more factor that comes to mind is the huge population of the NCR region.

  2. My two cents –

    * I agree with the generalization Aditya has done here, such incidents happen in other parts of the country as well, but its certainly more in Delhi/Norther part of the country. On the point of it being a Media HQ of sorts and thus gets highlighted then the onus is on the citizens itself to set a good example for the country knowing its a Media center.

    * Those who are trying to defend by narrating personal experiences in other parts of the nation – Most of this is reported in south, and A point which we are missing here that these are cases of racism (yes I will call it racism, if you deny a fellow citizen his right just because he is from north) and not of excessive aggression which Aditya is trying to highlight. This also can be debated saying south indians are also prey to similar incidents up North, but having seen both parts I would say that racism certainly more prevalent down south!

  3. things happen.. it depends on who,why,when,where and in wat situation.. it ll b injustice to generalise.. and i dint lik the bias in the title..

    1. Shruti,

      I do not think it is appropriate to say “Things happen” when aggression leads to murder. It is not trivial, is it?

      I know, many readers did not like the regional bias in the title, but it is true.

  4. Well written Marathe … to those who say Delhi crimes get more attention because those happen in the Capital city, then it also has greater responsibility to stay clean because of the same reason and set the example for the rest of the country and portray a better social picture to the World !

  5. Well written. The aggression is certainly concerning, and it may be more prevalent in certain parts of North India.

    But I think Sagar very rightly pointed out, its because the sensible man (who writes and reads these blogs) is least bothered to do anything about it until it directly affects him. That these discussions happen is a good beginning, but more needs to happen on the ground. The police, government and bureaucrats needs to be made more accountable, and we need to drive that accountability by making our voices and concern heard.

    There are multiple opportunities and avenues for us to do this – but the question is how many of us actually have the conviction to go on the ground and bring that change. Some of have done it, many more need to do it.

  6. Hi,
    The post is very well written and important thoughts too but don’t agree to it being generalized to North Indians. I am a North Indian who has lived mostly in West as well as South and from my experience I can tell you that such things prevail not only in North but almost in any part of the country. While life in Mumbai was so safe for me, but it is as difficult in Bangalore as it would have been in Delhi for me. In Bangalore also you cant go out alone anywhere at night. An old couple was brutally murdered in Jayanagar with help of their inhouse maid and a call center gal was raped by taxi drivers near Electronic City. Ask anybody about Auto Rickshaw guys in Bangalore and Chennai…trust me they are no less than gundas, yes they are! And their behavior is not only limited to North Indians these days, even local people are being harassed by them. I personally try to avoid getting into confrontation with auto guys or maids in Bangalore, I will walk even a long distance if I don’t have car some days instead of haggling with auto guys but what can old people like my Mom do who have to go to say a physiotherapist everyday but she wont because she is scared to venture out alone and dealing with auto guys daily. It is the impact of changes in our society which is making people inhumane in general and this situation is there in most part of our country now!

    1. What’s that aggression of a different kind? I guess we hear that “mera baap commissioner hai, MLA hai” in South as well. And I have heard that here in Maharashtra. How can you classify aggression by geographical regions!

    2. Priya,

      The post does not focus as much on planned murders and rivalry, or aggression that does not lead to murder or rapes. These are terrible to exist.

      What I have written, is about spontaneous spur-of-the-moment aggression that leads to stabbings, and killings.

  7. It would be preposterous to link these acts of aggression to North alone – as they are common elsewhere too. Maybe they are more common in North and are better reported. Acts of aggression should not be correlated with regions – they can be linked with existing cultural norms and values though. And these cultural norms and values have clearly taken a hit because of modernization and globalization.

  8. Few incidents from my life:
    -My classmate is coming back from T Nagar at around 10 PM. Auto wala demands twice the meter reading. She refuses, ofcourse the conversation was in broken english since she is from North India and doesnt know Tamil. Auto wala tells her to buzz off and when she turns back, he picks up a stone (enough to kill or maim an adult) and throws at her. Somehow if eludes her. I saw this from a corner of the street while i was walking back. Auto wala had no remorse at his “spur of the moment” reaction.
    -I am coming back in a AC Volvo bus from office in Bangalore. A fellow passenger repeatedly asks for his change. Conductor tells him in kannada – “this is not north india, i am not your servant”, to which he replies that it has got nothing to do with North or South India. His requests continue for sometime. All of a sudden, conductor comes over his seat and slaps him. Fellow kannadigas watch. When i protested, conductor tells me to get down. Nothing happened after that spur of the moment reaction.
    -I am coming back from MG Road in a BMTC bus on Saturday. Few mins before i have to get down, i make a move towards the door. Couple of educated 20 something men push me muttering “fucking north indian”. Since i could smell liquour, i did not make any scene. However when my stop (Manipal Hospital) came, I tried to move ahead, at which point both these well cultured south indian gents pushed me out of the bus at a “spur of the moment” reaction.
    So please keep your righteousness and presumptions about north indians at home.

    1. I never said these things do NOT happen in other parts of India. This clearly happens more in North India, and if I do not highlight North India, I will certainly highlight “Delhi”. Also, this is notmy presumption, but my observation and request. I have lived in North India as well as in South India, West India and East India. To that extent, I have been slapped on my face, and abused right here in Pune by a local Maharashtrian, so I certainly do not think that there is no aggression here.
      Lastly, my blog is my home and this is the right place for my thoughts!

  9. I think this spate of violence should not be generalized to some areas.I guess it more linked with decadence of values in our society(and I should say the global society as well), the decadence has been aggravated and driven to extreme by our new media. We have media channels, serials and movies, which highlight and glorify aggression and lust – physical, verbal and mental and the worrying part is that its considered “cool” by the young generation. And in the end, we sit and gloss over the crimes which are end results of such decadent focus.

    Do we really place any importance on the need of basic values? If we don’t then we are responsible for the problem. If we do place some importance – its not visible or creating any impact on the coming generation.Our current education system is geared up to produce engineers and doctors, but not men and women of high character. Character cannot be inculcated by just technical or scientific knowledge, it has to be a part of culture and educational setup.

    In the end, I would also like to ask you – you have highlighted the problem. But are you ready to become a part of the solution to it

    1. +1 to Sagar, we speak of rising violence in society, about women being harassed or murdered and then go back and watch shows like Rakhi ka insaaf, Rodies etc. Hell, we even discuss them excitedly at our workplace/gatherings etc. Television is a powerful media and they are serving this content because people want to see it. Had there been a protest and a ban on the very first such serial that came out, things would’ve been a little different.

  10. This is bullshit. I don’t think it is far worse in Delhi or North India. Its just a case of the capital city getting more attention from the media.

    Why do you want start a civil war btw. north & the south by generalising it this way?

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